Kitchari is a traditional Ayurvedic dish which is very easy to digest but nourishing and purifying and it is a great way to cleanse your digestive system without having to go on a strict detox diet.
Kitchari is similar to stew (or porridge) and is made with mung beans, vegetables, basmati rice and spices. It’s also tri-doshic meaning that it’s suitable for all Doshas. (If you don’t know your Dosha, the Ayurvedic mind-body type, click here to take my Dosha quiz!)
I first made Kitchari a few years ago and I fell in love with this super nourishing dish. I’ve experimented with a number of different recipes since, as there are so many different versions online but the recipe below seems to work well for me. It is very easy to make.
All you need is basmati rice (or you can also use brown rice or quinoa), mung beans, seasonal vegetables and spices. I like to cook with minimal ingredients (so it’s nice and simple). I only use turmeric and cumin for spices and two or three vegetables.
1/2 cup of basmati rice (white or brown, or you can also use quinoa)
1/2 cup of split yellow mung beans or whole mung beans (which have green skins)
2 tablespoons organic coconut oil or ghee (clarified butter)
1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
½ teaspoon of cumin seeds
½ teaspoon of ground coriander
½ teaspoon of fennel seeds
1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
1 tablespoon of chopped or grated fresh ginger
4-5 cups of water
2 cups of vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes and any other vegetables you like)
Handful of Spinach or Kale
Few leaves of coriander or basil for garnish
Half lemon (per serving)
Rinse rice and mung beans. Soak rice for up to an hour and soak mung beans as per the instructions on the package. Whole mung beans should be soaked overnight.
In a large pot, warm the coconut oil or ghee over medium heat and add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. When they start popping, add fennel seeds, ground coriander and turmeric and stir well and cook for about 1 minute, then add ginger.
Drain rice and mung beans and add them and mix well together for few minutes till rice and beans start to stick to the side of the pot.
Add water and vegetables and stir well. Then cover the pot and bring to boil. Stir and simmer at medium heat for about 20 minutes.
Add salt and pepper, and spinach and stir occasionally for another few minutes.
The finished dish should be creamy and stew-like. If you prefer a soupier consistency, add more water.
Serve with halved lemon and sprinkle on some fresh coriander.
This recipe is for 4 servings. Remaining bowls can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days but no more than 3 days. It is always best to have any food fresh so I don’t usually keep leftovers refrigerated for more than 3 days and never in the freezer!